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  • Writer's pictureMegan Filoramo

Creating the culture you want: Enthusiasm as social courage

What is your wish list for a perfect job?

Great hours, pay, and benefits? ✅

Meaningful work? ✅

Doing something you are good at? ✅


But what happens when these things are all in place and the culture sucks?

Then these ideals for a perfect job can leave you feeling lacking.


But culture isn’t some intangible vibe that is impermeable. Culture is just made up of people, people like you and me. It’s kind of like the solar system of the office, lots of spinning parts, lots of energies, lots of things already set in motion with you only having control of yourself and your relation to the other parts. 


BUT

Like anything in life, changing one thing will cause a ripple effect, changing the things around it.


Am I suggesting that you take on the culture of your whole organization? Maybe, but not right away.


Actually, I am concerned about YOU, YOUR experience of your job, and YOUR health and wellness. I also happen to know that if enough nurses feel better, the culture of healthcare can do nothing but change for the better.


So how do we do this? How can we be the change we want to see in the world when everything at work is already so stressful? 


It may seem like too much effort with all the other things you have to do. Wouldn’t it just be easier to complain with everyone else? Wouldn't it be easier to not go above and beyond?

Wouldn’t it be easier to just keep your head down, get through the day and get the hell out of there?


I get it. I’ve been there and sometimes unfortunately sometimes I still have those days. 


The key here is to realize it’s not so much that it takes energy to be positive, to stay focused and engaged, to be patient with coworkers who may be struggling, it takes courage.


Yes, you heard me right. It takes courage.


It takes courage to swim against the cultural current.


I first heard this idea from Jen Sincero, author of You are a Badass. (Yes, I read books like this.)

“Enthusiasm is a kind of social courage.”


Maybe your gut feeling is that you don’t have the energy for courage but ...

if the culture is literally draining every ounce of life from you then maybe it would take less energy to try a little courage.


I know how nurses are. I know how we will go above and beyond to help people, sometimes even at the expense of ourselves. What if tapping into this inherent nursing trait will give you the strength you need to be a pinch courageous.


What courageous things am I suggesting?

  • Not feeding into office drama.

  • Offering a different perspective when people are complaining (or if that’s to much, trying to change the subject)

  • Being cheerful when other people aren’t.

  • Overlooking other people’s stressed out behaviors instead of talking about it to anyone who will listen.

  • Encouraging the new people.

  • Taking your time and being peaceful, even if there is a frantic energy going on.

  • Sticking up for other people.

  • Confidently speaking up for yourself, without drama.

  • Being patient, even when it’s really really hard.

  • Being willing to try to be the change, even when it looks pretty grim.

  • Being enthusiastic.


Are you willing to be courageous for your friends, your coworkers, your patients? Imagine what your job would look like if your culture was 10%better. Now imagine 50% better or 90%.

Are you willing to be courageous for yourself?


Don’t underestimate the positive effect you can have by courageously showing up as a positive force.

You have it in you already. Think of it as just another part of being a nurse: caring for the culture of your job.

You will be amazing, you already are.


 

Struggling with your job is normal but you don’t have to accept it as unfixable. Coaching can help. Schedule a consult call here and let’s get you feeling better.

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